By Neil Macdonald
Undefeated Lady Bs win NCC title
Blaine defeated Sultan 60-37 on February 20 down south and Lakewood 66-31 on February 18 at Blaine in NCC girls basketball action to extend their undefeated skein to 22 (they won their last two games while finishing fifth at State in 2002).
This season�s 20-0 overall and 16-0 NCC record made Coach Pat Green�s machine the first Lady B unit in the school�s history to go through a regular season undefeated.
Having earned a bye in the initial round at District, Blaine plays the winner of the Lakewood-Granite Falls first round game on March 1 in Mt. Vernon.
Jessica Summers led the Lady B�s against Sultan, scoring 20 points and getting 9 rebounds. Linsey Taylor added 11 points; Shela Robertson, 7; Ainsley Nix, 6; Kimberly Harmening, 4; Amanda Stull, 4; Jennifer Kramer, 3; Phillina Cain, 2; Rochelle Jackson, 2; and Kristina Francis, 1.
The Cougar contest was the template for the Sultan assault.
Sophomore guard Francis, Blaine�s ruler of the rim, and junior post Summers of Inside Influence Inc. matched the entire Cougar contingent in points. They did a few other things as well. Francis tallied 14 points, 9 assists and 8 rebounds. Summers scored 17 points and recovered 11 rebounds.
Non-starters Harmening and Cain reflected the interchangeable quality of the Green Machine, coming of the bench to score 9 and 8 points respectively. Kramer got 6 points; Nix, 4; and Robertson, 2.
Taylor, the team�s lone graduating senior, was her usual unusually adept offensively defensive guard, scoring 6 points and making defense Her domain. Anyone approaching a lane Taylor was guarding was going the wrong way on a one-way street.
5th grade girls finish third in division
Blaine 5th grade girls AAU team finished 3rd place in their division this weekend in Port Angeles with a 2-2 record.
Their first game was a loss to eventual winner Port Angeles 23�20. Hunter Ives had 2 points; Libby Moore, 7 points; Stefawn Perrin, 9 points; Christine Perry, 2 points.
The second game was against second place Ferndale. Blaine lost 20�14. Cheyenne Martinez had 4 points; Stefawn Perrin, 3 points; Crystal Wojcik, 5 points; Christine Perry, 2 points.
On Sunday the girls came out and won their final two games. The first game against Forks was a come from behind win, 28�23. Caitlin Dudley had 4 points; Christine Perry, 3 points; Kailey MacLeod, 2 points; Crystal Wojcik, 4 points; Stefawn Perrin, 4 points; Cheyenne Martinez, 8 points; and Libby Moore, 3 points. The final game of the tournament was a defensive victory, 26�4 against Chimacum. Libby Moore had 12 points; Cheyenne Martinez, 7 points; Stefawn Perrin, 4 points; Korrin Jackson, 2 points; and Caitlin Dudley, 1 point.
Alex Hendricks-Hockey averaged five rebounds per game.
boys get bye at District
Blaine ran over Sultan 77-38 on February 21 at Borderite Court and defeated the Cougars 52-48 on February 18 at Lakewood to consolidate second place in the North Cascades Conference and a bye in the first round of the Northwest District 1 boys basketball tournament.
The Borderites (16-4 overall, 13-3 NCC) play the Meridian-Lynden Christian first round winner on February 28 at Mt. Vernon.
Jake Gilmore hit a game-high 26 points for Blaine in the Sultan assault. Ryan Alexander, who hit a triad of treys, added 14; Grant Sanders, 11; Wes Hubbard, 8; Jon Freeman, 6; Brendan Mulholland, 4; Matt Van Beek, 3; Danny Le, 3 and Erik Kramer, 2. Van Beek got a game-high 8 rebounds. Sanders got 7 assists.
The Borderites� dominance was absolute. Blaine took a 3-0 lead in the first five or six seconds on a Sanders� 3-pointer, built a double-digit lead before Q1 has half over and never looked back. They led by 14 points after Q1, 23 points at the half, and by 36 at three-quarter time.
The Cougar engagement was a contest of a different kind as Blaine staved off a late Lakewood surge that closed the Borderites� lead to a single point in Q4 before Sanders sank four foul shots to put the Cougars chances on the endangered list.
Sanders led Blaine with 16 points and 5 assists. Gilmore got 14; Alexander, 10; Freeman, 6; and Mulholland, 6 .
The game did follow coach Dan Rucker�s script with the Borderites controlling the tempo. The only time Blaine had to deviate from their usual modus operandi was when Lakewood�s 6-3 senior Garrick Olson�s offensive behavior (he tied Sanders with a game-high 16 points) forced the B�s into a box-and-one D in the second half. Olson and teammates Mark Star and Bryce Barker scored 33 points in Blaine�s 56-39 victory over LW in January, but got only two more (35) this second time around.
BK Edged in Wrestling
Blaine�s Bayartsengel Khishigdorj, an exchange student from Mongolia, represented the Borderites in the 152-pound category at Mat Class XV (aka State 2A wrestling tournament) on February 21 in the Tacoma Dome and just missed making the medal round.
Chelan�s Mason Massey, the eventual 152-pound champ, decisioned Khishigdorj 13-3 in an opening round bout, but BK came back to decision Hoquiam�s Spenser Sharp 15-6 in the ensuing consolation round skirmish. Khishigdorj was eliminated in third round match-to-metal action, losing a heartbreaking 4-3 decision to Jacob Sypher.
Borderite Grant Sanders hit four straight 3-point shots in the third quarter of Blaine�s 57-42 NCC boys basketball win over South Whidbey 57-42 on February 14 at Borderite Court.
Easy to write, difficult to do. Hitting two consecutive treys is relatively rare; three is rarer; four treys in four shots is more than half way to the almost impossible. When done within the 8-minute framework of a single period, it approaches probabilities reserved for lotteries, sweepstakes and such. It�ll be mentioned at team reunions 20, 40 and 50 years from now.
Spring wrestling has begun for the Blaine Barracudas. Youngsters wishing to join the �Cudas can register any Tuesday or Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Ken Waters Gym�s wrestling room. Would-be grapplers from grade 1-12 are welcome. For further info, call Craig Foster at 371-7467.
Blaine grad and Oregon point guard Luke Ridnour extended his Pac-10 basketball conference season record to 62 straight free throws on February 22 before he missed the first of two freebees late in Oregon�s 78-66 loss to Washington in Seattle. Ridnour broke the former record, set by Stanford�s Ryan Mendez in 2001 at 49, in a 80-63 UO win over Oregon State on February 15 at Corvallis.